Almost three-quarters (74%) of European companies are not very confident that they can fully recover after a disaster. This is one of the results of the EMC-sponsored European Disaster Recovery Survey 2011 which also indicated that more than half of all organisations (54%) lost data or suffered systems downtime in the last 12 months. These findings highlight that companies need to focus on backup and disaster recovery to ensure continued business operations in the event of a natural disaster or the more routine and common IT failure. The survey finds that disruptions are more likely to be from an IT problem than a natural disaster. The three most common causes of data loss and downtime are hardware failure (61%), power failure (42%) and software failure (35%). This is in comparison to only 7% of systems downtime or data loss cited from a natural disaster and only 8% attributed to employee sabotage. Regardless of the cause, 44% of organisations reviewed and changed their procedures for backup and recovery in response to an incident. Furthermore, 27% of businesses increased their spending on backup and recovery after a disaster. “The results of the survey show that there is a need to rethink backup and recovery strategies in Europe,” says Kelly Ferguson, director of EMEA marketing, EMC Backup Recovery Systems Division. “We live in an economic time when investments need to be made wisely and there can be no tolerance for interruptions to the business because of an IT systems failure. With a properly thought out next generation backup approach, companies can improve both recovery from day-to-day outages as well as recoveries from something more severe.” The study identified that there are measureable business impacts from systems downtime, with the top three cited as: loss of employee productivity (43%)’ loss of revenue (28%); and delay in product development (27%). Systems failure resulted on average in two lost working days for the businesses in the survey. This is the equivalent of 28,391 man-hours for a company employing approximately 2,000 employees. “Backup and recovery is a fundamental part of business and an essential element of information management,” says Neil Fisher, vice-chairman, the Information Assurance Advisory Council (IAAC),the independent body which promotes good information management and assurance practices. “The EMC-sponsored survey highlights the high level of incidents where businesses have overlooked the importance of planning for events, even ordinary ones. It really doesn’t matter if the events are routine, acts of god or the result of criminal activity. Companies who plan for events and who invest in secure and speedy recovery will be the market winners.” Across Europe, 49% of companies are obligated by either insurance policies or regulatory requirements to have a disaster recovery plan. However, with the right backup and disaster recovery approach, companies can achieve cost-savings from insurers. Just over a quarter of the organisations surveyed were offered reduced premiums by their insurance provider depending on their IT systems backup/disaster recovery strategy. The research found that businesses are spending, on average,10% of their IT budgets on backup and recovery, and 29% of businesses do not feel they are spending enough. For backup and disaster recovery purposes, 40% of companies still rely on tape. Where tape is used for disaster recovery purposes, 10% still have an employee take home a copy of the backup tapes with them.
Posted by IT-Online on Nov 24, 2011